Happy New Year

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Flag of Canada  , Nova Scotia,
Friday, January 9, 2009

Well here we are having just crossed the threshold of a new year, new beginnings, resolutions and all that... 2009 came in here with a blast - literally.
Xmas was great, everyone did exceptionally well at giving exactly the right gift to everyone else and the humorous ones raised the anticipated laughter. (June - your ring pull hat bands went down a storm and were particularly well suited to Leo & Nat as he had brought back two Stetsons from his visit to Calgary in mid December; I'd strung one with leather for him and one with ribbon + beads for Nat.)  

 Malc is now keen to improve his wood carving skills (or at least make a start on acquiring them) and I have already made several pieces of jewellery. Those who faced a flight home had suitably light and 'packable' presents. The musical crackers that we had brought from the UK were great; thanks Leo for helping us thread the snaps into them (we had previously removed them for the flight over) and they provided an hilarious interlude between courses on Xmas Day. Xmas dinner was a wonderful blend of British (roast pots, brussels with chestnuts) and Canadian (sweet pots with pecans and xmas mash - with red/green peppers) culinary delights. Xmas day itself was quite mild, though this lulled us into a false sense of warm security as you will see. In the pause before New Year we managed another "lobster fest", well you can't have too many lobsters can you?

There was great hilarity when the dance mats came out...

We went to watch a 'Mooseheads' game http://www.halifaxmooseheads.ca which was a first for all of us except Leo (obviously) and Malc who had seen senior games in Italy. Great fun, fast - though not as fast as seniors I gather, and yet another  photo opportunity for Malc, suffice to say that thanks to the 'burst' facility on the camera, he broke ALL previous records!! There was lots of action, a few scraps and it was a nail biting finish with PEI (Prince Edward Is. Rockets) scoring in extra time to snatch the victory. The 'littlies' who came on at half time were sweet they brought back many memories of Bournemouth mini rugby.

New Year's Eve we celebrated at a wedding would you believe...Leo & Nat were already guests attending and had asked if it was OK for us to join in after the formalities were complete. As with so many Halegonians (residents of Halifax) we have met, their hospitality was amazing and so we found ourselves welcome wedding crashers. In fact it seemed that many of the guests were expecting us. It was a great evening, thank you Elliot and Karen for allowing us to share your celebrations.

With a toast at midnight and a hearty Aulde Lang Syne we felt the optimism of the New Year wash over us, however any jubilation was soon chilled when we walked the very short distance home. By this time the snow was falling fast and in places it was coming down horizontal - very sobering!

Waking up on New Years Day little had changed, but as is the Thornley way a walk was in order. This soon became an expedition up Citadel Hill with the express purpose of sliding down it on 'crazy carpets' crazy being the appropriate word! Layered up as much as possible (thanks L&N for the thermals!) but still allowing movement we set off, Nat and I as spectators and the 'boys' to do the silly stuff. The total madness of our expedition soon became apparent as we struggled to
a. make progress
b. stay upright
c. see where we were going
Anyway we made it and I think the following photos say it all...

The following day we took a much more leisurely stroll in a local park, it was still cold but it had stopped snowing and we were able to appreciate the beauty of the scenery.

As I put the finishing touches to this blog the snow that began to fall earlier in the day has turned to freezing rain, the kids are home from work and say it is treacherous outside - hip fracture weather according to Nat. Good job we aren't going anywhere tonight!!
Don't forget to check out the album piccies there are some gems!
Happy New Year everyone
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